The story of a lost duckling

Having studied zoology I have been lucky enough to explore some beautiful landscapes. I have observed the amazing bird migration that occurs in Cyprus twice a year and have conversed with porcupines in South Africa. Much of the beauty of these landscapes is observing the intricate web that connects all the plant and animal species.

I have been involved in animal rescue for over a decade and have been lucky enough to have been involved in the rescue and rehabilitation of many animals and birds.  Which leaves me in a bit of a dilemma; should we help wildlife in distress or leave it to the ‘circle of life’?


I nursed Chloe the Muscovy duck back to health in 2003 after she was taken to Bath RSPCA with maggot infected wounds following a dog attack

Recently I was faced with this exact conundrum after I discovered a lost duckling on a local lake here in sunny Cornwall.  A local resident told me she had been observing this duckling all day and had not seen it with a parent bird. The adult ducks had been attacking it and she was shocked to say that the duckling ran to her feet for protection.


While my zoologist head told me to leave the duck to its fate, my animal loving heart said otherwise and so the duckling came home with me.


Young ducklings can become very stressed when on their own, so he enjoyed the comfort of a warm blanket and some TTouch therapy. TTouch can help to reduce stress in animals and birds.

After a night of rest and good food I delivered it to the wonderful Mousehole Wild Bird Hospital where it will be cared for until it is old enough to be released. It is currently living with another orphaned duckling and is doing brilliantly.


He soon settled in with his new friend at the bird hospital (thanks to Mousehole wild bird hospital for this photo)


With the lovely warm weather here in Cornwall he was soon able to have a swim with his new friend (thanks to Mousehole wild bird hospital for this photo)

It is very important that you seek professional advice from a local wildlife charity or the RSPCA if you find a wild animal in distress. While it can be tempting to try to care for a wild animal on your own, it is imperative that you take it to a wildlife rescue centre and never place yourself in harm’s way to save a wild animal. Remember, animals can attack when threatened or in pain.